Former India opener Aakash Chopra has opined that the Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) should let go of big-ticket buys Glenn Maxwell and Sheldon Cottrell to give themselves a bigger purse for the IPL 2021 auctions.
Chopra made this observation while talking about the disappointing performers of the KL Rahul-led unit in IPL 2020 in a video shared on his Facebook page.
Aakash Chopra started by pointing out that the Kings XI Punjab team management had made some strange decisions in the recently concluded IPL.
He highlighted that the franchise fielded Chris Gayle late in the tournament while persisting with the non-performing Glenn Maxwell in their playing XI.
"There was a problem that they couldn't play Chris Gayle in all matches. I felt there was a slight problem with their management that Mujeeb didn't play much and Maxwell kept on playing," Chopra said.
The renowned commentator observed that Kings XI Punjab had a revolving door policy in their selection of bowlers as well, with constant changes being the norm. He continued:
"Hardus Viljoen did not get a chance at all. Cottrell played and then didn't play, same was the case with Neesham and Jordan. So the door for inward-outward movement was always kept open."
The former KKR player picked the lack of runs from Maxwell's willow and the inconsistent performances of their overseas fast bowlers as the biggest issues for the Kings XI Punjab saying:
"Maxwell's lack of form was a big problem, overseas bowlers another big problem and the Indian lower middle order where Hooda actually did well and gave them a chance in the last match."
Chopra added that the Kings XI Punjab selection decisions left a lot to be desired, with the hugely underperforming Glenn Maxwell getting their constant backing.
"Hooda did not get to many chances and Maxwell got plenty of opportunities. He didn't disappoint a little, he was a huge disappointment. The Kings XI Punjab missed a trick or two with their selections," Chopra said.
Aakash Chopra's views on Kings XI Punjab's approach for the IPL 2021 auctions
Aakash Chopra opined that Kings XI Punjab would be better served if there was a mega auction held before IPL 2021, considering the fast bowling resources they currently have.
"Kings XI Punjab have a reasonable need of a mega auction because they need changes. They have to do something for the fast bowling unit because it will not work out with the ones they have," Chopra said.
He suggested that Kings XI Punjab should definitely release Sheldon Cottrell and Glenn Maxwell apart from Hardus Viljoen, if he is not one of their preferred options for the playing XI.
"They should leave out Sheldon Cottrell, they should leave Hardus Viljoen also if they are not playing him, and they should leave Maxwell as well," Chopra added.
The 43-year-old observed that Kings XI Punjab could persist with Chris Gayle as the next IPL is just around the corner, although the big-hitting Jamaican is on the other side of forty.
"They can keep Gayle if he wants to play although he is 41-years old. But the IPL is just a few months away and he was not expensive as well. So they can keep him as he is an X-factor and an intimidating factor," Chopra continued.
Aakash Chopra signed off by observing that Kings XI Punjab might not be desperate for a mega auction. He said that the 2014 IPL finalists would have to make some judicious decisions in a mini-auction and let go of the aforementioned big-ticket players to get a bigger purse to replenish their squad.
"Kings XI Punjab might still be able to manage without a mega auction but they will have to do a good selection in the small auction and if they drop those 2-3 big names, they would get a bigger purse to shop wholeheartedly," Chopra concluded.
KXIP had dished out whopping amounts of INR 10.75 crores and INR 8.5 crores respectively for the services of Glenn Maxwell and Sheldon Cottrell at the IPL 2020 player auctions.
Their release would definitely give the franchise the purchasing power to improve their squad even if there was no mega auction before the next edition of the IPL.
Published 15 Nov 2020, 15:12 IST